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We Eat…Ants?

“Less chocolate and more ants, please!” -Ashley Thieman, probably

All work and no play makes the MEDIC team rather dull. That’s why when we want to unwind, have some fun, and do some great networking all at the same time, we go to LaunchBio’s Larger than Life Science Events. Hosted on the first Thursday of every month, LaunchBio packs these three hour events with informative talks from leaders of the life science industry, fun activities for all ages, and local craft beer!

Ashley Thieman, our Director of Operations, and I have made a habit of attending Larger than Life Science and have had a blast every time. The first one happened in the midst of a January snowstorm and there were still at least 100 attendees! Say what you will about the North Carolina life science community, but we are some serious beer drinkers and networkers.

The February event took an interesting turn. It started with an amazing panel on FDA regulations featuring one of our partners, Luke Marshall, CEO of VitalFlo. By the way, if you like revolutionary medical technologies and haven’t heard of VitalFlo, you definitely want to check them out. Next on the docket were demonstrations of the new frontiers of technology, such as virtual reality. Then a section of tables caught my eye; the new frontier of food!

“This cricket and pale ale pairing is simply divine.” -Andy Taylor

That feeling of excitement was quickly changed to confusion when I walked up to a table of bugs! Not only that, but these bugs had flavors? We saw crickets with flavors like bacon and cheddar, and chocolate wafers filled with ants! Being the bold and fearless individuals that we are, Ashley and I each tried a bacon and cheddar cricket first and the experience was…interesting, to say the least. Next up were the ant wafers. Mine was mostly chocolate, but Ashley ate a particularly ant-y wafer.

The prospect of eating insects may sound ridiculous, I’m not completely sold on the concept myself, but there are some benefits. Insects are relatively easy to grow and maintain and they are chock-full of nutrients! In fact, it is more efficient to grow insects for consumption than most livestock we currently eat. Eating insects is not an uncommon practice outside of the US. While I may not be sold on eating bugs, I am sold on attending the next Larger than Life Science event this Thursday, April 5th. I would encourage anyone who enjoys a good time and learning about life science to attend as well!

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